Morning View

Morning View

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Pancake People

While I know it's been awhile, I have had endless, bountiless, boundless events that all deserve their own little blippet of prose. Alas, due to the 8-5 job, the volunteering in arts galleries, the constant concern with the dwindling of dollars, the zumba classes, the soaking up the sunshine moments, and my kitchen explorations, I have avoided the computer like I avoid doing anything with my laundry hamper, other than pile more and more clothes atop the volcano of knick knacks- any day now, mismatched socks, shirts and shorts and skirts, lost headbands and matchless shoes will explode upwards. However, before I go into the last few days, let's talk about what's presently on my mind.


This article came out a few YEARS ago, 2008 to be exact, but it was brought to my attention when I read a review of Nicholas Carr's new book, "The Shallows," which I plan on buying, and with a twang of curiosity I was propelled towards his old article, the article that inspired the novel, the technology that inspired the book, the old school, the turnably crisp pages of written word. Does anyoen else feel like your brain is being rewired? Sometimes, I feel like I'm losing my mind...literally. I used to memorize phone numbers, birthdays, authors. I had to remind myself of this man's (Carr's) name three times, I was too distracted reading his article- my mind didn't absorb both his name, the title, and the information. I always say I'm bad with names. I'm not. I used to be really good with names, better with faces, but still- now, when I meet someone new, I literally have to remind myself to repeat his/her name in my head multiple times or else I forget it instantaneously. My friends know me to be a technology spazz- I don't check facebook all that often, I don't have Twitter, it takes me hours to respond to texts- the two technological forms I am best at are talking on the phone and emailing. Hearing a voice that's across the country while cradling my brick of a phone continues to excite me- phone calls convey emotion, in a way that only so many !!!! ..... :-) :-) :-D can do on facebook, texts, whatever. I miss the voice, the timbre, the hard grainy, soft rainy, melting, crisp, giggling, chuckling, chortling, snorting, combats of silences, battles over who speaks first- that's human nature, the closest thing to be with someone you miss in person. Email, that's different- I check my email and respond as prompt as possible, when it matters, because I fear being caught in my technological laziness by people I work for, look up towards, learn from, etc.

In his article, Carr talked about how difficult it's become for people to read long articles. Clearly, I WRITE A LOT. So I challenge you, my beloved friends, to stick with the words, just as I'll try harder to stick with yours. Do any of you pronounce words in your head when you read? Apparently, that's not normal, according to my dad, who passes off wise opinion as fact. I speak constantly in my mind- I say every word, sometimes I still have to feel out the corners of the phrase with my brain, wrap my neurons around how to pronounce different tentacles of prose, poetry, ramblings of alphabetic mishmash. My mind grew tired, reading Carr's article, just as he predicted. I had to reign it back a few times, remind her that I would not prove Carr right, when really, I want to. I want to believe that there is some neurological effect of all the glorified techno-communication that may not benefit us, that robs us of more intrinsic, natural reactions to people, situations, desires, dislikes. I want to believe him because then I would have an excuse to abandon my emails, disconnect my computer, and hopefully fall back into those days when I could read for hours. Don't get me wrong, I still love my reading time, but to be honest, it does take me longer to finish a novel, even the most thrilling of adventures. It took me a month to get through Wolfe's "Look Homeward, Angel." Longer. Sure, there were many days I didn't read at all, there were many I read 5 pages, many I read 15. And yes, his writing is as dense as the mountain forest he paints for us, but I LOVE his writing. My mind never used to be able to sleep- as soon as the pages of a book opened, BAM, guaranteed hour of reading at least- I would have to force myself to go to sleep, always pleasantly surprised at the immediacy of exhaustion that accompanied the snap of my lightswitch- I never suspected sleep to be lurking around my perimeter.

So, my challenge for myself, ironically through this very medium of technology that is discussed in his works, is to start by reading more, fervently, feverishly, in a frenzy of literary love.

First, I'll buy Carr's book and I'll finish it in a few days. I've never been a fan of the survey-stuffed, semi-dry, knowledge-spouting drudges of pages that go on for hundreds of flips, BUT, that's only because I have my mind set against them from the beginning. I want the facts, the cheap ABC, 123 of the interesting tidbits- the scientific rambles, the evidence to back everything up, I avoid. I don't want to. I want to be able to like important books, packed books, just as much as I love strolling through Wolfe and Bronte and endless other authors- the book I'm reading right now, "The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society" (which I will also complete in a few days.) Work is beckoning, decisions to be made, but in the meantime, slowdom...I WILL RETRAIN MY BRAIN.

PS "Pancake people" is a phrase referenced by Carr from playwright Richard Foreman- it refers to the flattening out of people, the skinnying of the mind, the diet of brain, the shortcuts that derive from the juice, the meat, the squeeze.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

RECAP: Really Exciting Chaos And Passion

So I'm learning a lot that I didn't think I was ready to handle- for instance, in "grown up world," shortened to GUW (pronounced GOO), the inhabitants do not need as much sleep, or at least they're excellent pretenders, or zombies. They go to bed around 11, wake up around 6. Technically, that's 7 hours, but I'm sleep spoiled and so the lackage of zzzz's has been making me groggy, especially during these darkened nighttime hours. But, I'm getting ahead of myself:

I have started my internship with UApresents and am LOVING every second of it. I am the extra limb to the trusty tripod that is already in place- under the watchful gaze of Jo, the head woman in charge, UApresents has finally emerged from the dismal depths of broke-hood to the land of profitability- she's been there a few years and has completely transformed the place. She knows negotiation, "no's" when a price is too high, and navigates her loving troops by letting them take matters into their own hands (snaps for n alliteration). I work predominantly under Mario (think Nintendo) who has an understated brilliance about him- he has a wealth of connection and always has little things for me to do. I'm currently experiencing technological difficulties, as in my camera won't load, but when I get my dad to assist me I'll post the picture of the blue and beautiful box I created. Technically, I was not required to decopage for work, but I figured I would add my own little flair.

I've sat in on meetings with the heads of performing arts departments, listened to them talk about artists I love in friendly terms- art evolves into business, a booking and negotiation of people who appeal to certain demography. I, "the college student" "the Greek" "the artsy type," offer advice about what (or who) the average student wants, likes, and hopes for. I listen to bands in my spare time, recommended by my boss, and compile information about their most popular songs, tour dates- I watch their videos, see who they're similar to. Today, I entered so many dates (for the 2010-11 season of UApresents- check it out HERE:) into technological calendars I developed a left pinky callous-- and yet, that's been the only "low," and while my pinky was throbbing, I was laughing the entire day.

In other news: FAMILY FESTIVITIES and CULINARY ENDEAVOURS: Each night of the week, barring the ever-crazy weekend, each member of my 5 person family cooks a meal. Last night- I embarked upon the adventure, spatula in hand, apron clad and cooking glad- The Menu:
Creamy Sweet Potato Soup:
Homemade Wheat Bread
Blueberry-white chocolate chip-ginger snap cookies
Spinach Salad with Strawberries

Simply put...edible heaven. Pictures may have to wait...just found out that I will be going riding at 5 AM tomorrow morning, as in waking up in 7 hours (if I could magically just shut off the rollercoaster motion of my mind) and going to a stable to lead horses around. Did I mention that last time I dealt with horses, one stepped on my foot? Picture of said horse is around on here somewhere- I don't know how to place pictures yet. I just pseudo found out how to put links on here- this blog will be a HOT MESSSS- the best kind of living.

New song: Passion Pit's song "Little Secrets"-

Friday, May 21, 2010

Truth or Dairy

Challenge: I think I may be becoming lactose intolerant. For anyone who knows me, you don't even have to know me well, you know what a serious blow to my shining reality this is- I have had a love affair with cheese for my entire life. Quesadillas, cheese toast, macaroni, pizza, I can't eat salads without cheese, brie and wine, bean dip (with almost an entire bag of shredded cheese)...the list goes on. However, due to minor champagne bubbliness in my tummy that has been happening lately, I've decided to challenge myself to see if I can go THE ENTIRE SUMMER without eating cheese. Let's be honest, there will be exceptions. For example, I don't consider yogurt to be dairy- technically speaking, I know it comes from the moo moos as well, but I've grown to be addicted to the little Greek yogurts with honey and granola, and that is a passion that cannot be severed. Also, I have an affinity for ice cream...this one is difficult. I'll try to stick to frozen yogurts (think YoPo) but we all know my sights and the echoes of my cheese-emptied stomach will direct me elsewhere. Also, occasionally, a girl has to have some pizza, and cheeseburgers, so that will be accepted as well. I think those are all of my contingencies...wish me good luck.

Challenge 2: My mom and I make lists every summer of things to do- places we've been waiting to visit, waiting for what I don't exactly know- paintings to make, corners of the deserts to watch the sunrise from, mountains to hike up with a picnic lunch in tow- all very important endeavours. We've turned our gaze to the artsy world lately. My little sister won an award for her adorable mother and baby paper mache ducks, voted best by her peers, and so we've decided to induct her into our paint smeared club. I was thinking it'd be fun to make a collage of song quotes- lyrics from songs that you love, lines that summarize the message of the whole, wordy tornadoes that leave you a little dizzy- songs that you love or what to be associated with, those contain the whimsical lyrics, the truths- so, if you have any lyrics you want to be made into collagey creations, scibble them down (virtually) in the little comment box because as much as I love music, and as contingent as my daily happiness is upon it, you know I can only get by with a little help from my friends... ;-)

Two lines from one of my classics: "Since her return from her stay on the moon/she listens like spring and she talks like June" and "Did you finally get the chance to dance along the light of day/and head back to the Milky Way"

"Drench yourself in words unspoken/live your life with arms wide open"

"Well hot and heavy pumpkin pie/chocolate candy, Jesus Christ/Ain't nothing please me more than you."

"Slow down you crazy child/you're so ambitious for a juvenile...where's the fire, what's the hurry about/you better cool it down before you burn it out...When will you realize, Vienna waits for you?"

"I listen to the wind, to the wind of my soul/where I'll end up, well I think only God really knows/I've sat upon the setting sun..."

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Rhythmic Living

Did you ever stop to think that we are a part of, a strand of, a continuation of the ball of earth we rest atop? My mom and I were talking earlier tonight, watching the sun set and create saguaro silhouettes- it's our own little tradition. We create a Parisian cafe in our desert sideyard where we're hidden my crawling, creeping bushes and passerby's fears of snakes- we have yet to see a rattler lurking, waiting for tasty morsels of our standard brie and wine accompaniment to conversation. Tonight, the topic: whimsical life, fantastical life, mesmerizing life. We straddle the orb of mother earth- we walk across her spine, rest atop her shoulders like Atlas- how often can we hear her communicating with us? We're barnacles to her existence, dependent on her generosity. She gives and gives, and yes, common argument would say we only take, but I believe that man's eyes are widening to the fleshy earth around him. Environmental movements, healthy, organic eating (kudos Megan and Ilana), the appreciators of nature, hikers, bikers, climbers, campers...knowledge seeps upwards with each generation, from the core of the sphere we perch atop- it's comforting to know that an open pathway of communication exists. Have you ever been so overwhelmed by joy, so full, that you're thankful for your thin coating of skin to keep the river of happiness from raging outwards, flowing into the life around it, that it's a part of? I have those moments, more frequent that the average joe, therefore meaning that I am a pseudo-psycotic mind wanderer who spends more time dreaming up lives that being aware- but you wanna know whats brilliant about that? I've always been told to BE PRESENT, BE PRESENT, witness the wonders that surround you. As a dreamer, you do that- you take the ordinary and sprinkle it with fairy dust, you give life to plants and creatures and aspirations as if you're on a 70s acid trip, Beatles style, combing rainbow highlights into life. Dreamers don't always remove themselves from reality- sometimes, we just stare down at it from above, using binoculars, watching everything, and linking it all together, stringing a pathway from A to Z that shows patters between what we think of as living, and the breathing, perspiring cells of everything else, those things without a measurable pulse, thumping heartbeat.

My house, right now, is full of music. FULL BURSTING EXPLODING RELEASING noise from boys and wise pearls from girls- my brother blasts rap from his room, a rhymic beat to the cleaning of the kitchen that commences post taco delicacies- my mom's radio battles the modern mode with throwbacks to classic, lullabies and crooney drones- rememberable (I declare that to be a word). PULSING FLOWING JIVING STRIVING life...we all are running towards something, from something- staring straight at a misty future, whatever that future may be...I'll figure that out when I break through the fog. I just wanted to write about how I think it is so ok, so acceptable, to be lost, presently, in your mind- abandon tunnel vision, hold dreams on a high shelf but don't constantly reach to pull them down to your level- let the years ahead rest in the cubbies, remain behind their doors- someday, we're all going to get there. But for now, groove a little to your own rhythm.

"Music is an outburst of the soul" ~Frederick Delius

"Music and silence go hand in hand because music is done with silence and silence is full of music." ~Marcel Marceau
Task: In search of music in the silences, light in the darkness, beauty in the norms... my computer is taking too long to download, but go to this site for a little musical awakening:

Blinded by the light...

Ponderment: "Blinded by the Light" by Manfred Mann...It goes: Blinded by the light, wrapped up like a deuche in the middle of the night...

Is this correct? It could be "deuchen." This song has been following me lately via my favorite radio station out here, 92.9 The Mountain, and so I have to question the obvious. I'm not even looking on lyric pages, I need insight on this very important matter. More blogosphering to come after working in the gallery and working on my booty, via zumba tonight.

"Always a beautiful answer who asks a more beautiful question." ee cummings (I think this question falls into his realm of the beautiful)

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

One man Wolfe pack

Yes, I purposely spelled Wolfe wrong, do you want to know why? Because I am in the midst of burrowing through Thomas Wolfe's "Look Homeward Angel." My verbal stutterings are his toddler talk- by the time this incredible man was an adolescent, he had created an entire world for his mind, a musty, earthy safe haven where he retired with his treasures, his aching heart, his desired isolation. For those of you who have not tiptoed through the words of Wolfe, I am going to force you to go pick up a copy at the library immediately through this series of down on my hands and knees praises that I throw back at history, back to the late 1930s when Wolfe tragically passed-- apparently, there's been a lack of Wolfe throw back, a ceasing to his greasing the hands of eager readers with slick pages-- he was so famous during his lifetime, writing monumental works (this book, 507 pages) that encouraged little boys of his generation to flourish into manhood with pencil in hand (that doesn't at all sound like a phallic reference, now does it?) Let me introduce you to the desert breeze of Wolfey prose, let me woo you with his words- personally, I love him for the literary slap he admonishes on my mind. Whenever I get lost in the steamy sauna of thoughts that literally roll across the Sahara of my brain, I read a few sentences of Wolfe and am immediately smacked back into place. I challenge each of us to try to write as he does--

"As the flame shot roaring up from the oiled pine sticks, and he felt teh fire-full chimney throat tremble, he recovered joy. He brought back teh width of teh desert; the vast yellow serpent of the river, alluvial with the mined accretions of the continent; the rich vision of laden ships, mastered above the seawalls, the world-nostalgic ships, bearing about them the filtered and concentrated odors of teh earth, teh sensual negroid rum and molasses, tar, ripening guacas, bananas, tangerines, pineapples in the warm holds of tropical boats..."

His descriptions need description; the commonalities of life are jigsawed down into slivers of shadowy reality. To write as he rolls, to sow the words of the earth like a garden to his crop...inspiration.

To be inspired, how does that touch you? Deep, obviously. Intimately, passionately- it should seize you in a way beyond breath, a way that lifts your breasts past your chest and your shoulders skywards- how many times has inspiration really hit home? Last year, I listened to this rapper, Emmanuel Jal, one of the Lost Boy of Sudan who performed for one of Nelson Mandela's last birthdays- his energy yanked me from gravity, and the images he created with his voice had me swearing I would leave for Africa in a month. I don't think it's wrong, necessarily, that inspiration has to leave, sooner or later. I can't remember every person who's filled my head with blinding truth, every performer who got me mimicking their moves in the hallways. But, that's part of the beauty, the fleeting nature of raw, soul-cleansing awe. We feel that connection, that passion, for an instant small, and then it washes above our heads, rips through our ribs and passes onto the next innocent bystander. We are witnesses to the greatness- and then, when that empty place aches during duller days, we look for something new to fill it. Read a book, sing a song- watch GLEE! (on right now, being recorded) Challenge: Find the small inspirations and squeeze them to their pulp, rattle them until their seeds shake free. It's always the time to inhale a little passion.

smile baby smile

the morning I wake up...before I put on my make up...know where this going? Yes, I am obsessed with Julia Roberts. When she was a few years older than me, she stared in Pretty Woman. How is that possible? You wanna know what I love about her? Her smile. Cliche, I know, but to those of us with big, beautiful, curvaceous teeth who want to show them off every now and again, she gave us the lips and the inspiration. So, topic of the day and just of my mind right now...SMILES. Lets give them a little attention, shall we? As women, there are so many different types of smiles we learn about, via movies and teenage books that we still occasionally read and bawl over, that will seduce a man, get you what you want, appear cutesy and innocent, etc. I think that smiling is one of the most important things anyone can do in their day. Example: When I get really hungry, I get irritable. Not just annoying, but flat out vindictive- today, I was buying a new pair of jean shorts, and my mom and sister and basically the whole family clan plus extra 8th grade mini mes were in tow at Dillards. I had eaten one bagel the morning...and then was working all day long and could only manage a few peanut M&Ms. Needless to say, I started snapping like a turtle at everyone, even though my mom was buying my clothes! Roo. So, lesson to be learned (talking to myself), this cannot happen. Whenever you feel stretched thin, like the thread of your life is a quivering tightrope and your calves are sooo close to giving out and letting you fall below, smile. It'll win you more friends, more connections, more opportunities than any other trick up the sleeve.

"Love is rarely to be found in extravagant gestures. It is most revealed in a quiet word or a gentle smile." ~Stuart and Linda MacFarlane

"smile (n.) the shortest distance between two people."

"A good laugh is sunshine in a house." ~William Thackeray

"Wrinkles should merely indicate where smiles have been." ~Mark Twain

Now, I will attempt to engage technology in combat while I figure out how to post pictures/doodads in the middle of on the lookout for results.


Monday, May 17, 2010

the beginning of the beginning

Do you want to know the hardest part about starting a blog? The name. It's all in a name, right? Well, to think up some brilliant name, clever and coy and subtle, takes the work of three and a half people, at least in my life- the half, being my friend Ilana, who promised she was sending naming energy in my direction from the land of Florida fronds. Now that I have my name, Under the Tucson Sun, what exactly I'll write about doesn't seem nearly as daunting. I'm kind of a talker; I breathe words and lyrics, scribble them incessantly, speak them ungracefully yet energetically- I think that words pave pathways that take us places, they're the stepping stones from our dreams to our futures. It's all about who you know, who you are, and what you do with what you're given. That brings me to the premise of this blog- a summer of artistic passion. I'm going to be interning with two fantastic groups of people in the following months, both of them devoted to the promotion of the most inspiring creations, performance and visual arts. Picasso once said, albeit in Spanish, "Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life." I believe that every single being that lopes across this planet has artistic inclinations, the desire to mold something with his or her or its own hands (or paws, or hooves, or...this is where my friends would say they get the point). So, I get to work with geniuses, men and women who drizzle their communities, this community, with honey thick passion, painting, dancing, singing, performing.

One, I will be the eagerly smiling intern at a group called UA Presents, the organization that brings artists from all around the world to the University of Arizona. I'm predominantly in charge of student body outreach and marketing, leaking and leading the buzz of artistic melodies throughout the campus, directing my passion straight towards the hearts of others. Did you know that most students at different colleges, mine (UNC Chapel Hill aka perfection on earth with a side of sweet potato fries) included, have $10 tickets for students? That means I've seen the frantic fiddling of Eileen Ivers, the desert jams of Tinariwen, the muscle pulsing of Alvin Ailey...all for 10$. Be envious- I will be in 2 years after I graduate. My other job is working in an art gallery, the Diana Madaras art galleries. Check out the link to her website:

The drawl of the southwest, the adobes huts and saguaro (pronounced sa-waar-o, not sag-waar-o) greens, flutters outwards from the her canvas planes- bold colors capturing your gaze in a geometric mish-mash of shadow and light. In one of my art history classes, I learned about the movement in the mid 1900's to breach the borders of painting confines- artists like Rauschenberg in his work, "The Canyon," used pillows, stuffed birds, anything that clawed its way forward into reality. Madaras' art defies 2D boundaries to me- you want to learn about the Southwest? Look at her pieces- it's just as wild, untamed, surprisingly colorful, and raw as you would imagine.

So...what can YOU (think Uncle Sam index finger) expect from my ramblings? Quotes and notes and life's momentoes-- pictures and fixtures and smiles incarnate-- misused words and things I've heard and volcanic explosions of life and the living- the connections I crave and day to day and the rhythmic shocks of reality. I'm pursuing my path- destination: (Sue Sylvester voice) unknown. Emotions: totally ok with the unkown. Bring me the whitenening silhouettes of dreams lurching into my road a few miles down the way- I'll get where I'm going when I get there, and then I'm off someplace entirely new. A few of my guiding stars so far:

"Pursue some path however narrow crooked in which you can walk with love and reverence." ~Thoreau

"VITALITY! That's the pursuit of life, isn't it?" ~Katharine Hepburn

"If you can't be a good example, then you'll just have to be a horrible warning!" ~Catherine Aird

My favorite:
i thank You God for most this amazingday:for the leaping greenly spirits of treesand a blue true dream of sky;and for everythingwhich is natural which is infinite which is yes

(i who have died am alive again today,and this is the sun's birthday;this is the birthday of life and love and wings:and of the gaygreat happening illimitably earth)

how should tasting touching hearing seeingbreathing any--lifted from the noof all nothing--human merely beingdoubt unimaginable You?

(now the ears of my ears awake andnow the eyes of my eyes are opened)